How To Remove Old Oil Stains From The Wooden Deck?

Jun 28, 2024

A wooden deck can be a beautiful addition to any home, providing a perfect spot to relax in the morning or evening. However, it can be challenging to maintain its clean appearance when dealing with stubborn oily stains.

Whether from accidental spills or vehicle leaks, oil stains can detract from the beauty of your wooden deck if not dealt with properly. We will explain a step-by-step process to effectively remove oily stains from your wooden deck using common household ingredients that are readily available in your home, ensuring you reclaim the lost glory of your wood.

6 Easy Steps To Remove Old Oil Stains From The Wooden Deck

1. Prepare The Area

Working in an open area like a deck increases the risk of interference while cleaning a stain, especially from natural elements such as strong winds, temperature, and direct sunlight. So, before anything else, make sure to prepare the area to minimise interruptions.

Start by cleaning dirt, leaves, and other debris from the deck to prevent them from coming into direct contact with the stain. Cover the surrounding areas, such as furniture, plants, and sidings, with drop cloths to protect them from any chemical reactions.

2. Gather Your Materials

Once the area has been prepared, gather all materials needed including baking soda, mineral spirits, turpentine, warm water, vacuum cleaner, protective gloves, eyewear, sanding equipment, sandpaper, and microfiber clothes.

3. Clean The Wood

So, first, grab your vacuum cleaner and use it to vacuum the stained area as well as the surrounding deck to remove dirt, leaves, and other debris from the surface.

These contaminants act as a barrier between the deck and the oil stain. Vacuuming removes this layer, allowing the stain remover to directly contact the oil and clean more thoroughly and evenly.

4. Apply The Solutions

When dealing with old oil stains, you have the option to use a mild detergent solution, mineral spirits, or turpentine, depending on the type of stain. Let’s begin by learning how to apply a mild detergent solution.

→ Detergent Solution

Prepare a bowl of warm water and add some mild detergent to it. Mix the solution using your hand to create soap. Then, take a clean cloth, dip it into the soapy water, and apply the soapy water to the stained area.

Rub the soapy water onto the affected area, making sure not to scratch the wood but applying enough pressure to work the suds into the wood grain.

After cleaning, rinse the area with clean water or wipe it down with a clean, damp cloth to remove any remaining oily residue or soapsuds. Finally, allow the wood to air dry completely.

→ Mineral Spirit

Mineral spirits are a type of solvent commonly used for thinning paint. They can be found at hardware stores but can cause skin irritation, so it’s important to use them in a well-ventilated area.

To use mineral spirits to remove a stain, take a clean cloth or cotton ball, dampen it with some mineral spirits, and apply it over the stained area. Rub firmly in a circular motion, making sure not to saturate the wood. Continue rubbing until the stain vanishes, then rinse with clean water and blot it dry.

→ Turpentine

Turpentine is a common solvent used for cleaning oily stains or surfaces, similar to mineral spirits. One of the advantages of turpentine is that it works well on all types of wood. However, when using turpentine, avoid using abrasives like hard brushes, which can damage the deck finish.

To remove stains, rub the affected area with turpentine using a clean cloth until the oil is no longer visible on the wood. After the area is cleared, give it a final wipe with a damp cloth to remove any remaining turpentine or oily residue.

5. Sand The Stained Area

Even after cleaning, some oil stains might leave residues trapped within wood fibres, below the surface. So to deal with them, sand the cleaned area thoroughly to remove this residual oil and create a more even texture for a flawless finish when retaining or applying a sealant.

6. Seal The Deck

Wood, as you know, is naturally susceptible to damage from sun, rain, and snow. Sealing creates a barrier that helps protect the wood from water damage and prevents warping, cracking, and rot (eventually caused by water in most cases).

Final Say!

Staining is a frequent problem with wood floors, and addressing oily stains can be difficult. Nevertheless, you can master the skill of cleaning oil stains from your wooden deck, where the key is to know the appropriate materials and methods to use.